Meeting your significant other's parents is a lot like interviewing for a full-time job, with your career goal set at Director of Offpsring Management. So, dress accordingly, and take some advice from a guy who's never met the parents but been to many job offers—none of which include fertilization. Dressing for the job is more than important—it's crucial. It's a first impression that is lasting and can make or break the offer. Winning over the parents shouldn't be that hard, should it? Our advice:
1.Throw on a pair of dark denim that actually fit you. Nothing could be a worse look to your possible future in-laws than worn-out jeans, rhinestones on the back pockets, or inadvertently flashing your rear. The Reed jean, $220 by Baldwin.
2. Wear a well-tailored shirt, not like the one you wore to your senior prom or to your "interviews" in those undergrad business classes. Try a basic flannel button-up, or a classic, fail-proof solid color. Gitman Vintage cotton madras shirt, $165, available at Penelope's, 1913 West Division Street (at Division and Wolcott streets); 773-395-2351.
3. Ditch the black shoes that are scuffed beyond recognition, and grab a pair that have some personality like Clark's lace-up Desert Boot. Walk-Over Derby suede bucks, $220, available at Haberdash, 607 North State Street (at Ohio Street); 312-624-8551.
4. Add a casual jacket, like a khaki trench or Barbour jacket to complete the look. Rain Jacket by Shades of Grey by Micah Cohen, $198, available at Una Mae's, 1528 North Milwaukee Avenue; 773-276-7002.
5. Throw on a tie. You never wore one growing up, so it's time to start now. Wool Tie by Jack Spade, $125, available at Jack Spade, 47 East Oak Street (at Rush Street); 312-915-0315.
Wearing a tie and nice shoes are key—this cannot be stressed enough. It's one thing to have an ill-fitting dress shirt that can easily be veiled by a jacket, along with denim that may not fit your body as perfectly, but those essential accessories seal the deal when being interviewed, by parents or by future employers.